Sunday, September 30, 2007

My Comment on Comments

I have been receiving quite a few comments and for that I thank you.............Some of them deride me for posting this or that opinion, others correct me for inaccurate reporting........Once again I thank you..........This blog is for expressing differing opinions and positions. I don't make any pretense that I have a definite very liberal/progressive viewpoint........but I will always post comments that are not rants against me or a particular post........Please make your point in a concise and reasonable manner and your comment will be posted........reply in a maniacal or fanatical manner and you'll be ignored.............I don't always get "it" right but I know that there will be someone to correct me...............Thanks for your support of this blog...........PEACE.................Scott

Bill Clinton Rips Right Wing's "Feigned Outrage" Over MoveOn Ad [VIDEO]

Posted by Adam Howard at 5:27 AM on September 27, 2007.

Clinton says, "It was just bait and switch. It was just, oh thank goodness, I can take this little word here and ignore what we’ve done in Iraq and what we’re gonna do."
Bill Clinton Rips Right Wing for ‘Feigned Outrage’ Over MoveOn ad

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This synopsis comes from Think Progress

In an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, President Bill Clinton said there was something “completely disingenuous about the feigned outrage” from conservatives over the MoveOn ad. Clinton noted that many of the same conservatives who expressed outrage had likened Sen. Max Cleland (D-GA) to Osama bin Laden and had smeared Sen. John Kerry’s (D-MA) war record. He added:

It was just bait and switch. It was just, oh thank goodness, I can take this little word here and ignore what we’ve done in Iraq and what we’re gonna do — and the outrageous way we gained political power by smearing John Kerry.


Tagged as: bill clinton, moveon, petraeus, cleland, kerry, republican party

Adam Howard is the editor of PEEK.

Documentary raises awareness about aftermath of Katrina

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New Orleans: A Labor of Love announces November 2007 release of Gulf Coast volunteer recruitment documentary to screen at 50 campuses, churches and community spaces.

Earlier this year, Independent Media Artist Katina Parker launched New Orleans: A Labor of Love -- a grass roots, multi-media, public awareness campaign to mobilize 5,000 volunteers to participate in reconstructing the Gulf Coast during 2008. Housed at, the user-supported, web-based clearinghouse offers a one-of-a-kind service to recruit, organize, and coordinate volunteers with available assignments, travel tips, advisories and resources.

"By most liberal estimates, it will take 3 to 5 years to reconstruct the city," says Parker, who's background is filmmaking, photography, writing, new media and public relations. "My goal is to use the power of independent media and grassroots outreach to motivate and mobilize a civic movement of 5,000 volunteers to aid in the reconstruction of the Gulf Coast during 2008 and subsequent years."

Parker is creating awareness about the Gulf Coast's ongoing need for volunteers through screenings and videocasts of her New Orleans: A Labor of Love documentary, which follows 18 Los Angeles Valley College students during their recent volunteering experience. The film interweaves the observations of student volunteers with the personal testimonies of New Orleanians like Mr. Dilbert, an elderly man living in a FEMA trailer and supporting his dependent wife on $600 per month while he tries to find someone to help him gut and rebuild his home.

"2007 is a crucial turning point," says Parker. "If we don't rally to rebuild New Orleans now, people will forget the need and the city may never be restored. There is something each of us can do: support the volunteer effort."

This fall, New Orleans: A Labor of Love will screen at 50 campuses, community centers and churches, where volunteers will be recruited on site.

To meet their delivery deadline, Parker and her supporters are on an urgent mission to raise $100,000 in operating expenses. Funding supports stipends for student moderators who research requests and maintain the user-supported community; additional trips to New Orleans to document and videocast the rebuilding process; volunteer recruitment at universities, churches, and community centers; completion of the documentary; and aggressive marketing campaigns through MySpace, FaceBook and BlackPlanet web communities.

Having invested $15,000 of her own money into the project, Parker has spent the last five months waking up at three in the morning, before going to her day job, to program the site, edit video, correspond with interested volunteers, create marketing materials and set up press coverage for New Orleans: A Labor of Love. In response to praise for her commitment to keeping the truth about Gulf Coast recovery in the public eye, Parker states, "This is what the Universe asked me to do. I have special skills that can help Katrina survivors return to their beloved homes, families and communities, but I can’t do it without your kind words and financial support."

All donations are tax-deductible through International Humanities Center, the fiscal sponsor for New Orleans: A Labor of Love.

Katina Parker


To donate visit:

To view press coverage visit:

To view the trailer visit:

anonymously sourced from either the web or a forwarded email.

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by Allen L Roland

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The hand writing is on the wall ~ the Democrats will not stand in the way ~ the American people are being ignored ~ Cheney's war mongers are still in control ~ the carrier groups are in position ~ the decision has already been made ~ click on ~ coming soon World War W ~ Bush's apocalyptic date with destiny : Allen L Roland

Allen L Roland

Freelance columnist Allen L Roland is available for comments , interviews and speaking engagements ( )

Take action -- click here to contact your local newspaper or congress people:

Click here to see the most recent messages sent to congressional reps and local newspapers

Allen L Roland is a practicing psychotherapist, author and lecturer who also shares a daily political and social commentary on his weblog and website He also guest hosts a monthly national radio show TRUTHTALK on Conscious talk radio

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Timely native land rights rally uses innovative techniques

by ladybroadoak Page 1 of 1 page(s)

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This is a learning lesson for us all. All this OpEd is black and white, the experience I had today was in LIVING color.

Today, September 21st, more than 250 First Nation leaders, RAN activists and allies are at the Ontario legislature with an enormous banner reading "Native Land Rights Now!" This ran on a live video feed. I received an email to come watch and I jumped over to another browser frame and took part in seconds.

This is an amazing way to conduct a protest. I can smell the POTENTIAL that this has to truly change the way we organize and ensure that whole world watches as people make their stand about protecting the environment and focussing on corporate wrongdoers OR ..... well, even the sky is no limit.

With provincial elections just around the corner, it is definitely time for Ontario's political parties to stand up for Native land rights by halting the unrestrained logging and mining happening in the boreal forest. There have been ongoing actions to protect native land rights and the environment going on for months.

Recently, Canada rejected the UN Declaration on Indigenous Rights. They did this although the government worked hard on this -- as the frontrunner in organizing efforts for ten years. The Canadian government and the mainstream press has made many excuses saying that the language was too broad and could cause trouble in the future with land claims: this is a nonsense! The Declaration is not binding, and therefore could hinder nothing at all.

So the timing of today's action is fantastic.

The action today with use of television technology made it possible for the entire world to watch.

Native groups taking part in the action--including the Grassy Narrows, Ardoch and Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nations are demanding a moratorium on industrial activities on their traditional territories that occur without their free, prior and informed consent. They've been given support by Greenpeace and the Christian Peacemaker Teams. They're are just beginning to garner world wide attention. This innovative idea to get attetion can only serve to help; it's a way YOU can get involved, too. Today the protesters filed a 1 billion dollar lawsuit against Ontario so, again, this is timely.

I logged on not knowing what to expect and was pleasantly surprised. There was a chatroom next to the screen and I was able to get an email address within just a few seconds (!!!!) so that I could email Ontario's premier. He had had so many emails already that the site normally used wasn't taking any more.

I went earlier this week to see the Premier debate on health and disability issues; not surprisingly he wasn't there, some other party politico stood in his stead, but I had so wished to confront him about the uranium poisoning issue, as it effects ALL of Ontario, not just poor disabled people he's been able to ignore his entire term. So you can imagine how getting an email to him today was a delight.

local peace and human rights workers.

To see the progress of this campaign . and what campaign it really is - just log on to this website. You should also go there to see just what this new technology might do for YOUR cause(s).

The future for this is bright.

I really want to make this into an ACTION ALERT!! so if you care to write to the media telling them you don't want uranium mining OR you want ALL land claims settled fairly OR think the US/Canada should sign the UN declaration perhaps you'll use OpEd's handy link. Otherwise,you can now write Ontario's Premier as I just did, thanks to today's well conceived plan.

Take action -- click here to contact your local newspaper or congress people:
I support native land claims rights. Save our environment!!

Click here to see the most recent messages sent to congressional reps and local newspapers

Virginia Simson is a spiritual journalista/activist who runs a visionary planetary tutorial blogspot.
She invites you to join with submission of your ISP email address and a statement explaining how it feels to to you to be an EARTHLING right NOW and what your personal and planetary goals are. We would like to know what our members can do to assist you.

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Why Hillary Clinton Will Win

by Kevin Geary Page 1 of 1 page(s)

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I know there are a lot of people who feel uncomfortable with the thought of Hillary Clinton winning the Democratic nomination, and the reasons are myriad. They feel she's arrogant, they feel she's "just more of the same", they feel she'll be beaten by the Republican smear machine who they think will go into overdrive once she becomes the nominee, and then finally there are those that hope for the kind of change they think Barak Obama will bring (and certainly, he's the only Democratic candidate who could easily win the support of moderate Republicans, may of whom think that he's someone they could vote for, unlike Hillary.)

But, even though I myself really like Obama, and in many respects I see him as a real change candidate, perhaps even more so than a possible woman president, and I can certainly see the merits of many of the other Democratic candidates, like Joe Biden, whose command and knowledge of Foreign policy is certainly formidable, and Bill Richardson, who in any other election season would certainly be a front-runner, as the highly successful governor of New Mexico, the fact is that every time one sees Hillary Clinton, either in the debates, or speaking on CSpan at a Q&A session, she comes across as not only having a total command of the facts, but also as the most formidable and "presidential" of all the candidates.

This command of the facts, and ability to speak without a moment's hesitation, seems to me to be her strongest quality and adds to the perception of her "presidential" qualities. One underestimates her at one's peril. And my liking for Obama has been tempered by his really rather lack-luster performance in the debates, and his less than stellar performance in Q&As, whenever I have seen him. He's attractive as a personality without question, and I know several Republicans who would vote for him if he were the candidate in the election, yet I cannot see him winning the nomination.

It's a strange phenomenon, although not unknown in politics, that a very popular candidate universally, will fail to get the votes necessary to win. Case in point; in the recent French elections, the UDF candidate, was less popular in the first round, but if he had beaten the socialist, Ségolène Royal, in the first round, he would have handily defeated Sarkozy in the run-off! So, often one finds, as with Obama, a strange phenomenon of people supporting one candidate whom they really like, but voting for the candidate they really think will be the winner, even though the candidate they like might well have more universal appeal in the main election. I believe we have the same phenomenon in operation here.

"Perception is a crazy mistress", as someone once said, but the fact is that in our media and television age, perception is everything, and just like the debate between Kennedy and Nixon, those who heard the debate on the radio felt Nixon won, but those that watched on TV thought that Kennedy won. On TV, Hillary looks like a natural leader amongst men, and that perception will propel her to a victory, and more than likely, to the presidency.

Omaba, and all the other candidates, may well have George W. Bush to blame for their seeming failure to gain momentum in this race. George W. has caused so may people (even long-standing Republicans) to literally cringe at his lack of communication skills and his malapropisms, which have become the "meat and potatoes" of late night TV, from the Daily Show, to Letterman and Leno, that the tolerance for hesitation, or even thoughtfulness and reflectiveness in response to questions, has completely disappeared, right across the board. As a result, Hillary's extraordinary ability to be both informed and articulate, is her trump card in this race. Just like her husband, Bill, won against George Bush 41, because of the perception that he seemed more articulate and informed, but also more in touch with "regular people" than George 41, Hillary is now winning because of the perception that none of us wants to elect a "dumbo" or inarticulate "moron" ever again, even when none of the Democratic candidates could be thought of in that way in the least, but "Perception is a crazy mistress!". Blame George W. Bush, but that's the way it is. (Hillary should be sending him flowers!)

Kevin Geary is an artist and writer. He currently resides in Sedona, AZ.

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A Nation of Political Cults

by Brian Trent (Posted by Populist Party) Page 1 of 3 page(s)

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The following is a true story in two episodes, occurring some two weeks apart, with no formal relation to each other aside from the stunning light it shines on partisan "thinking".

Two weeks ago, I met some friends at a local coffee shop. We had taken two tables, and between sips of our chosen drinks were having a discussion about the emergence of civilizations throughout history. It's a fascinating, worthwhile subject; how peoples set up shop by rivers and grew their villages into towns, their towns into cities, their cities into empires. At one point I made an observation. "It's an interesting question as to why a Rome or Athens or Babylon didn't arise in ancient North America."

A lady occupying the table to my left spun around, the coffee in her mug violently swishing. "What, you think you're superior to Native Americans?"

"No," I said, turning to regard the new participater. "I'm just asking -"

"Are they lesser people? Did they deserve having their culture wiped out by European imperialism? What kind of fascist are you? Did they -"

"First of all," I interrupted, "I'm not passing judgment on Native Americans. I'm not judging their civilization or applying an inferior label to it. I'm just making a historical observation, and wondering what external pressures and forces produce a technologically-advanced civilization like China or Mesopotamia or Egypt, and why North America didn't develop one."

The lady only heard up to my words "making a historical observation" before she stormed out of the café in a red-faced huff. Now that I think of it, I'm pretty sure she stole that coffee mug.

With her departure my friends and I continued the discussion, citing how violent competition over limited resources (like in Mesopotamia or Greece for instance) results in an arms race of technology. One tribe brandishes flint axes, the other develops bronze to defeat them and take their land. Someone else makes iron, or the chariot, or the sarissa, or the phalanx, and on and on the contest goes. In North America there was quite a different situation: resources were abundant, and all a group had to do was push eastward into the vast plains, mountains, and forests to obtain them. It wasn't necessary, as it was in Mesopotamia, to engage in unceasing warfare from which sprang a Persian Empire. Our discussion wasn't a judgment; it was an exploration of ideas.

Why couldn't my friendly-neighborhood PC Enforcer join into this discussion? It was like a switch went off in her head, and insidious programming kicked in. rendering her deaf to the conversation's specifics.

Two weeks later I was attending a surprise birthday party, and I ran into the Bush Propagandist. Same genus as the PC Enforcer, different species.

After we had shouted "Surprise!" to the allegedly-unwary birthday girl, a political topic was broached. Specifically, a gentleman near me made some comment about how Bush was the only thing saving our country from disintegration, and that Democrats wanted to erect shrines to Osama bin Laden.

I introduced myself and asked him his political affiliation. He thought I was joking, but I pressed him until he told me he was a Republican. I asked him why. He gave me the small-government/fiscally-responsible advocacy line.

"Do you think Bush is fiscally responsible?" I asked, astonished.

He laughed. "Well, not really?"

"Is he for small government?"

"Sure -"

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Send Democrats a Message: Join Cynthia McKinney and be a Quitter!

by Dave Lindorff Page 1 of 2 page(s)

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Note: This is the first article on the new site of

By Dave Lindorff

Cynthia McKinney is doing it. It’s time for you to do" target="_blank">">do it too.

Have you, like many Americans, found yourself wondering why President Bush, over and over again, would hand the Democrats in Congress the weapon needed to bring him down?

Just look at the list:

Last year it was the nominations of John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. Then, in the new Congress, it was a $120-billion supplemental funding request for continuing the hugely unpopular war in Iraq, followed by a bill to legalize the very National Security Agency spying program which he has been running illegally for the past half decade, and that has had people of all political stripes in an uproar. To top that off, knowing that the Democrats were gunning for his Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales, Bush made sure to have the NSA spying bill put Gonzales in charge of the operation! And now this same president is coming to Congress to ask for another $50 billion for his Iraq War!

At first glance, you have to wonder, why on earth would he do this?

But then look what happens:

In every instance, with the exception of the latest Iraq War funding bill (and we know what’s going to happen with that), the Democrats have folded and given the president exactly what he wanted, causing apoplexy among the Democratic and independent voters who put them in charge of Congress last November. After all, Democrats ran for office last year saying they would stand up to the president, defend the Constitution, and end the war. Now each time Bush taunts them and they fold, public support for the Democratic Congress slumps further, to the point that today, they are even less popular that Bush—quite an accomplishment!

This is a truly impressive strategy—surely the brainchild of Bush’s Rasputin, the dearly departed (to Texas) Karl Rove, who long ago understood that the Democrats would not have the courage and strength of conviction to stand against even a president as profoundly despised and distrusted as Bush.

So all Bush has to do to promote a Republican victory in the 2008 elections is keep putting forward outrageous bills, keep expanding the war, perhaps to include Iran, and keep undermining the Constitution. The Democrats will enable or sign on to each horrible act in turn. And with each such shameless action taken by the Democratic Congress, they further enrage 2008 voters.

The Democrats, under Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (surely two of the sorriest excuses for leaders that Congress has had in modern history), simply don’t get it. They don’t realize they’re being played for suckers and losers. And they don’t even realize that they are alienating their base.

Which brings us to what needs to be done.

The Democrats in Congress, and at the head of the party, need to receive a serious wake-up call. Since they’re clearly too dumb or too out of touch to realize what’s happening, we need to send them a message they can’t ignore—the political equivalent of a car bomb.

I’m talking about mass resignations from the Democratic Party, with every person who resigns and becomes an independent or who changes their registration to a third party sending a message to the DNC explaining why he or she is quitting.

It starts small with a few people here and a few people there, but as Arlo Guthrie once put it, pretty soon we’re talking about a movement, and you can join it right here!

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Dave Lindorff, a columnist for Counterpunch, is author of several recent books ("This Can't Be Happening! Resisting the Disintegration of American Democracy" and "Killing Time: An Investigation into the Death Penalty Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal"). His latest book, coauthored with Barbara Olshanshky, is "The Case for Impeachment: The Legal Argument for Removing President George W. Bush from Office (St. Martin's Press, May 2006). His writing is available at

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The War

by Brent Budowsky Page 1 of 2 page(s)

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When Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Marine Corps Gen. and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Peter Pace testify before Congress today they should tell the American people the whole truth about what military leaders believe without sugarcoating the magnitude of our challenge or issuing false pretensions of unanimity.

America is today engaged in three wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and against al Qaeda while some are promoting a fourth war against Iran while our military faces extreme breakdowns, the president and his party wage war through vetoes and filibusters and the Senate debates a newspaper ad.

The hard and bitter truth is that after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) reached out to senior Republicans, with skepticism from both parties, and Sen. John Warner (R-Va.) reneged on his support for the Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) amendment to rationalize troop rotations, the slight hope for bipartisanship was destroyed.

Ken Burns’s documentary about the Second World War demonstrates why the Iraq war has gone disastrously wrong, and how honorable leaders can set things right:

Our troops should not be abused as fodder for campaign ads. Our generals should not be actors in a public relations drama. It is time to tell the country the truth, explain the hardships and ask every American to join the effort.

In the Second World War America stood with unity. Hollywood stars joined Wall Street scions; millionaires and taxi drivers faced death together.

Every American joined in the battle. Workers surged into the factories. Women came to Washington to join the war effort as secretaries and in Naval intelligence.

When we needed boats to take Normandy, an entrepreneur mobilized the entire city of New Orleans to build them. Seniors and the handicapped joined blacks in the segregated South and accomplished the mission as citizen soldiers standing together.

World War Two was a soldiers’ war and a people’s war. Throughout the free world everyone did his or her part together. Americans did not pass tax cuts during wartime; they bought war bonds to support the troops.

Imagine if FDR addressed the world and vowed to answer Pearl Harbor by invading Ethiopia. Imagine if battleships were burning at Pearl Harbor and FDR summoned Americans to go shopping, while his partisans prepared negative ads attacking leaders of the opposition who were awarded bronze and silver stars for valor.

Imagine if FDR had told Americans to be fearful and afraid, and then allowed American casualties that were preventable because tax cuts were more important than body armor and armored vehicles to save the lives of American troops.

Never before has a president so aggressively divided the nation with our troops under fire; not Washington, not Madison, not Lincoln, not Wilson, not Roosevelt, not Truman, not Ike. No president has ever done this.

Never before has any president used war to create fear, rather than inspire courage.

Never has any president refused to ask the nation to join the effort, and told us to enjoy tax cuts and shopping while troops suffer preventable deaths, many wounded return to substandard care, veterans centers remain dramatically underfunded, disabled vets suffer shameful mistreatment and the number of homeless heroes rises.

Never has a president mocked the Geneva Convention, poisoned the good will of the free world or put rules of military justice under such sustained attacked.

Never has a president created such a corrupt occupation: more than $10 billion of Iraqi cash and more than $10 billion of American aid lost or stolen. Huge amounts of American weapons smuggled to murderers by abuses in military procurement and crimes by civilians operating outside the rule of law.

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Brent Budowsky served as Legislative Assistant to U.S. Senator Lloyd Bentsen, responsible for commerce and intelligence matters, including one of the core drafters of the CIA Identities Law. Served as Legislative Director to Congressman Bill Alexander, then Chief Deputy Whip, House of Representatives. Currently a member of the International Advisory Council of the Intelligence Summit. Left goverment in 1990 for marketing and public affairs business including major corporate entertainment and talent management.

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Terrorism Awareness Project: The 21st Century's "Red Scare" Movement

by Frank J. Ranelli Page 1 of 1 page(s)

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A radical faction of the right is attempting to reconstitute McCarthyism in the 21st century by spreading exaggerated falsehoods to college campuses, eschewing accuracy and espousing hysteria about Islam and the honest threat of terrorism. Their aim is simple: Envelope the next generation of young minds under the umbrella of constant panic and indoctrinate them with deceptive and ignorant fear.


The last bastion of Bush proffers has once again trotted out a long ago debunked, inaccurate and xenophobic phrase, "islamo-fascists", once glibly coined by Donald Rumsfeld. Calling their cause, Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, a radical right alarmist group called, the Terrorism Awareness Project, wants to use old fashion fear and propaganda to persuade college students into this histrionic idea: that amorphous, rogue cells of terrorists operating in the Middle East are, “the greatest danger Americans have ever confronted.”

Now consider these alternatives to so-called “islamo-fascists.” Hitler killed all total 12 million Jews, dissenters and infirmed people, amassed a state-sponsored, mechanical-backed army of millions that wreaked havoc on numerous continents for 12 years. Stalin held the world’s collective stage hostage under a repressive regime replete with thousands of nuclear missiles that came within minutes of incendiary obliteration of the Earth, as we know it.

When in view of the heinous atrocities of Hitler and Stalin, the demagoguery and utter mendacity of the Terrorism Awareness Project should immediately be dismissed. Yet, over two million misinformed and deluded people have visited their site just this year alone. Adding to the sensational theatrics this fringe group is trying to propagate across college campuses are wild assertions such as “the academic left has mobilized to create sympathy for the enemy” and “the nation will be rocked by the biggest conservative campus protest ever - Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, a wake-up call for Americans on 200 university and college campuses.”

Claiming to have organized speaking engagements at over 200 campuses, through the David Horowitz Freedom Center, the Terrorism Awareness Project has lined up a premier delicatessen of right-winged demagogue polemicists. The astounding list is as distinguished as is the disingenuous message they tout. Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Melanie Morgan and Rick Santorum are but a few of the invited partisan hacks and hypocrites who plan to extol the virtues of the Terrorism Awareness Project and proclaim terrorism is a greater threat to America than global warming is to the world at large.

Incredulously, this group of firebrand, paranoid propagandists tenaciously tries again to tie Saddam Hussein with the attacks on September 11, 2001. They also falsely claim Iraq was a “second base of terror” long before American forces destabilized that country and provided the catalyst of chaos under which a new and minority faction of unconnected Al Qaeda groups formed.

Flagrant and desperate, the entire website is filled with intimidating and goading terms as well as foreboding phrases. “Islamo-facism”, “apologists for radical Islam” and “anti-Americans who are part of today’s academic environment”, litters the site and sends any rational mind reeling. The inanity and outright obtuse mindset of these shrinking-violets, who found the Cold War ostensibly a minor infraction, can only be realized by visiting the website of the Terrorism Awareness Project. Only then, after a thorough examination, can the full effects of the use of scare tactics and the unnecessary consternation be realized.

Reminding the reader beforehand, that the attacks on 9/11 occurred during the Bush administration - and that same President smugly dismissed a daily presidential briefing entitled, “Bin Laden Determined to Strike” - do we find instead the old saw that “Clinton did it” amongst the many other apocryphal allegations.

To make the point that the endeavor of this organization is reckless and insipid, certainly a platitude, might seem wasted to the other 219 million Americans who have already rejected the Bush doctrine of fear. Furthermore, only 27% of Americans now - Bush’s unshakeable and dutiful base - find the initiative of democracy through a climate of unwarranted fear anything less than odious. However, exposure is the best sanitizer and it ensures that imprudent groups, such as the Terrorism Awareness Project, are brought under the spotlight for scrutiny and proper dismissal as anxiety-ridden, provocative hacks.

To be clear, everyone lucid person should be offended by blatant suggestions that academics are undesirables or that the vast majority of Americans somehow just “don’t understand” the enormity of the specious adversary we face. Reasoned Americans do not endorse or express sympathy to any deed of extremism or group of fanatics, including the Terrorism Awareness Project.

Quite simply, the time has come for all Americans to choose reason, restraint and modesty, over the present zeitgeist of aggression and extreme nationalism, shrouded in obedience through panic and fear, brought upon us by the Bush regime.

Sources: Terrorism Awareness Project,; Also see: Defining Fascism, Then and Now

Frank J. Ranelli is a progressive, free-lance political writer and Internet talk show host. His current journalism endeavors to educate people on the dangers of the Bush Administration, the Religious Right, and the unlawful occupation of Iraq. In addition, he is an ardent advocate for the impeachment of President George W. Bush. His writing has been well-received and widely published in a variety of news outlets and across the Internet. His "smartly-written and imagery-invoking" articles have earned him such praise as, "Written with directness, strength, passion...It's great when it smacks, glares, grabs one!" -Ms. Joyce Benedict, Park Guide for FDR Historic Site

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by Allen L Roland Page 1 of 1 page(s)

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How is it that so few "public intellectuals" have been found, within the confines of this formidable, impetuous American democracy, who can bring up the idea of impeaching George W Bush for lying?.... I might be mistaken, but it seems to me that a large part of the country is waiting for this ~ through the looking glass of the American "left" lies a desert of sorts, a deafening silence, a cosmic ideological void that, for a reader of Whitman or Thoreau, is thoroughly enigmatic.: Bernard-Henry Levy / French philosopher
As far as I'm concerned the coup of our Republic has already occurred and both Parties are complicit in this coup where our constitutional democracy has been replaced by a plutocracy with martial law just another 9/11 event away. Daniel Ellsberg feels the same way ~
The only patriot who has stood alone refusing to be part of Bush's unconstitutional war and occupation of Iraq as well as honoring his oath to protect the constitution is Lt Ehren Watada ~ who still faces trial for refusing to obey orders to deploy to Iraq which he correctly perceives to be an unconstitutional and illegal war.
Sometimes it takes a knowlegeable visitor, who once experienced America's former greatness, to travel through our Republic and be shocked by the ineptitude, apathy and passivity of the progressive left. This letter was written in 2006 so it is now no longer a semi-comatose but a fully comatose American left.
And his key finding,which I also deeply sense, is that a clear majority of the American public want another choice versus the policies of George Bush and Dick Cheney ~ but there are few political leaders who have the courage to offer that choice.
Bernard-Henry Lévy, the French philosopher, bemoans "the semi-comatose state in which I found the American left" in the course of his journey through America ~ and files this letter of deep concern ~ which is even more valid today than almost two years ago.
Allen L Roland
By Bernard-Henry Lévy
Translated from the original French by Charlotte Mandell
The Nation
February 27, 2006 (posted Feb. 8)
Nothing made a more lasting impression during my journey through America than the semi-comatose state in which I found the American left.
I know, of course, that the term "left" does not have the same meaning and ramifications here that it does in France.
And I cannot count how many times I was told there has never been an authentic "left" in the United States, in the European sense.
But at the end of the day, my progressive friends, you may coin ideas in whichever way you like. The fact is: You do have a right. This right, in large part thanks to its neoconservative battalion, has brought about an ideological transformation that is both substantial and striking.
And the fact is that nothing remotely like it has taken shape on the other side -- to the contrary, through the looking glass of the American "left" lies a desert of sorts, a deafening silence, a cosmic ideological void that, for a reader of Whitman or Thoreau, is thoroughly enigmatic.
The 60-year-old "young" Democrats who have desperately clung to the old formulas of the Kennedy era; the folks of who have been so great at enlisting people in the electoral lists, at protesting against the war in Iraq and, finally, at helping to revitalize politics but whom I heard in Berkeley, like Puritans of a new sort, treating the lapses of a libertine President as quasi-equivalent to the neo-McCarthyism of his fiercest political rivals; the anti-Republican strategists confessing they had never set foot in one of those neo-evangelical mega-churches that are the ultimate (and most Machiavellian) laboratories of the "enemy," staring in disbelief when I say I've spent quite some time exploring them; ex-candidate Kerry, whom I met in Washington a few weeks after his defeat, haggard, ghostly, faintly whispering in my ear: "If you hear anything about those 50,000 votes in Ohio, let me know"; the supporters of Senator Hillary Clinton who, when I questioned them on how exactly they planned to wage the battle of ideas, casually replied they had to win the battle of money first, and who, when I persisted in asking what the money was meant for, what projects it would fuel, responded like fundraising automatons gone mad: "to raise more money"; and then, perhaps more than anything else, when it comes to the lifeblood of the left, the writers and artists, the men and women who fashion public opinion, the intellectuals -- I found a curious lifelessness, a peculiar streak of timidity or irritability, when confronted with so many seething issues that in principle ought to keep them as firmly mobilized as the Iraq War or the so-called "American Empire" (the denunciation of which is, sadly, all that remains when they have nothing left to say).
For an outside observer it is passing strange, for instance, that a number of progressives needed, by their own admission, to wait for Hurricane Katrina before they got indignant about, or even learned about, the sheer scale of the outrageous poverty blighting American cities.
For a European intellectual used to the battlefield of ideas, it is simply incomprehensible that more voices weren't raised long ago, in the name of no less than the force of "the Enlightenment," to denounce the ridiculous fraud of the anti-Darwinian supporters of "intelligent design."
And what about the death penalty? How can it be that there isn't yet, within the political parties, especially the Democratic Party -- which everyone knows will never budge on the question without decisive internal pressure -- a trend of opinion calling for the abolition of this civilized barbarity?
And Guantánamo? And Abu Ghraib? And the special prisons in Central Europe, those areas where the rule of law no longer applies? I know, of course, that the press has denounced them. I know you have journalists who, in a matter of days, accomplished what our French press still hasn't finished forty years after our Algerian War.
But since when does the press excuse citizens from their political duties? Why haven't we heard from more intellectuals like Susan Sontag -- or even Gore Vidal and Tony Kushner (with whom I disagree on most other grounds) on this vexed and vital issue? And what should we make of that handful of individuals who, after September 11, launched the debate about the circumstances in which torture might suddenly be justified?
And I'm not even talking about Bush. I won't even mention Bush's gross lies about the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, except for the sake of assembling the conclusive evidence. I know, of course, that you denounce him -- but mechanically, I am almost tempted to say ritualistically.
And yet the United States nearly impeached Nixon because he had spied on his enemies and lied. They impeached Clinton for a venial lie about inappropriate conduct. How is it, then, that it took so long to draw a parallel between those lies and a lie about which the least you can say is that its consequences were anything but venial?
How is it that so few "public intellectuals" have been found, within the confines of this formidable, impetuous American democracy, who can bring up the idea of impeaching George Bush for lying?
Some will retort that the "public intellectual" is a European specialty, that we shouldn't blame Americans for their infidelity to a tradition that is not their own. What do such killjoys make of the Norman Mailer of the 1960s? Of the Arthur Miller of *The Crucible*? Or of that golden age of civil rights awareness, when great writers enunciated what was right and good and true?
Others will object that the massive, resounding mobilization of civil society is not an American custom. All you need to do to convince yourself of the untruth of this is remember the 1960s and the movement for civil rights, then for the rights of minorities in general, which were the honor of the country and did not stem, let it be emphasized, from any of the major political parties.
Still others will wax ironic about the disease of writing up petitions, a French specialty, warded off by American pragmatism. Here the objection is more serious; and I know the fatuity that can exist in the mania for nonstop political engagement in the name of myriad causes -- but aren't you afflicted, my American friends, with the radically opposite sickness?
Hasn't the ethics of sobriety won once too often, with you, over the ethics of conviction? And how could one not yearn for a petition that would address our common nausea when faced with the spectacle of a diabetic, blind, nearly deaf old man, pushed in his wheelchair to the San Quentin execution chamber in California?
I might be mistaken, but it seems to me that a large part of the country is waiting for this. Everywhere, in the innermost reaches of America, you can meet men and women who hope for great voices capable of echoing their impatience in a momentous way. If I were an American writer, I would try to ponder the lessons of the totalitarian century and those of democracy, Tocqueville-style, all at once, in the same breath, and with the same rigor.
Allen L Roland

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Allen L Roland is a practicing psychotherapist, author and lecturer who also shares a daily political and social commentary on his weblog and website He also guest hosts a monthly national radio show TRUTHTALK on Conscious talk radio

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